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Aspiring Dental Students Visit UMSOD

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Written by Adam Zewe

What's so great about a career in dentistry? Forty-five college students spent three days at the University of Maryland School of Dentistry (UMSOD) seeking answers to that question. They participated in Dentistry Today, a program that introduces aspiring dental students to the profession.

The students, who visited UMSOD from June 17-19, listened to faculty members describe each dental specialty, learned about a variety of career options, observed students treating patients and practiced carving wax models of teeth in a preclinical simulation lab. "Dentistry Today gives these students a glimpse of the different specialty fields in dentistry, and it also introduces them to who we are as a school. They see firsthand how much fun dentistry is and the passion that our faculty have for their chosen profession," says Andrea Morgan, DDS '90, director of student advocacy and cultural affairs.

Ryan KrempelRyan Krempel, of Fallston, Md., who recently graduated from Stevenson University, enjoyed listening to tips from current dental students while he worked in the lab. "I'm drawn to the dental profession because it gives me the ability to work with my hands and it enables me to help improve a patient's smile. Your smile is so important; it is such a powerful means of communication," he says.

Shadarr StrangeFor Shadarr Strange, of Wilmington, Del., a rising junior at the University of Delaware, learning about the different dental specialties was an eye-opening experience. She felt especially drawn toward geriatric dentistry. "I really enjoy helping people, so I am looking forward to a dental career because I will be able to provide care for the underserved in my community," remarks Strange.

Kayla BirdieKayla Birdie, of Rumson, N.J., a rising sophomore at Lafayette University, was impressed by how energetic and approachable UMSOD faculty members are. She is excited for the wide range of dental career opportunities that that are available. "The field is always changing. Dentistry involves so many different aspects, from aesthetics to treatments for diseases that could impact a person's overall health," states Birdie.

Founded in 1975 as Operation Dental Career, the Dentistry Today program has seen about 50 of its participants matriculate into the UMSOD dental program in the last five years.

Click here to see photos from Dentistry Today.

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